M.I.D. London Gazette 25 January 1898: ‘3rd Battalion Egyptian Army.’
M.I.D. London Gazette 24 May and 30 Sept. 1898: Twice MID and ‘Brevet Major.’
CRIMEA 1854, CLASP SEBASTOPOL ‘DRILL SERJT F. CASSELL. GRENDR. GDS 6325’, CONTEMPORARY ENGRAVED NAMING, ARMY LONG SERVICE GOOD CONDUCT VR ‘6325 DRL. SERGT, F. CASSELL. GRENDR. GDS’ OFFICIALLY IMPRESSED NAMING, TURKISH CRIMEA, REPLACEMENT SUSPENSION ‘6325 CORPL. F. CASSELL. 3RD BATT. GREN. GUARD.’, REGIMENTALLY IMPRESSED.
Frederick Cassell was born in Magdalen, near King’s Lynn in 1831 and enlisted into the Grenadier Guards on 13 October 1852. He served in the Crimea with the 3rd Battalion from 24 November 1854. Promoted Corporal on 14 February 1855, he was reduced to Private in August that year but rose again to Corporal on 15 October. Serving in the Crimea until 1 July 1856, he took part in the siege of Sebastopol. Promoted Sergeant on 5 January 1861, he was discharged with that rank in October 1873. On leaving the Grenadier Guards, he became Sergeant Major of the West Norfolk Militia.
A year later Sergeant Major Cassell was killed during one of the worst train accidents of the in British history. Returning from a fishing trip on 10 September 1874, Cassell, along with a friend, Sergeant Robert Ward (ex Coldstream Guards), boarded a crowded train from Lowestoft to Norwich but died when a collision took place between theirs and another train. The sergeants were 2 of 98 killed and injured that day. Both sergeants were buried with full military honours.
The Thorpe rail accident occurred on 10 September 1874, when two trains were involved in a head-on collision at Thorpe St Andrew, Norfolk.
The accident occurred on what was then a single-track rail line between Norwicf railway station and Brundall. The two trains involved were the 20:40 mail from Yarmouth and the 17:00 express from London to Yarmouth. The latter had left Norwich Thorpe at 21:30 and would normally have had a clear run on its way to Yarmouth, since the mail train should have been held on a loop line at Brundall to allow the express to pass. On this occasion trains were running late. In such circumstances, when the timetable was upset, drivers had to have written authority to proceed further. Due to a series of errors (primarily, the telegraph clerk sending the authorization message before it had been signed by the appropriate official), both drivers received their authority, and anxious to make up for lost time, set off at speed along the single track. The accident, when it occurred around 21:45, resulted in both locomotives rearing into the air, and carriages reduced to wreckage.
Both drivers and firemen were killed, as were 17 passengers with four later dying from their injuries. 73 passengers and two railway guards were seriously injured.
A large number of articles and videos about the accident can be found online and various books have been written about it, including ‘The Great Thorpe Railway Disaster 1874’ by Phyllida Scrivens in which Cassell is mentioned numerous times.
Condition contact wear and edge bruising to Crimea in particular, naming clear. Long service with additional ‘L’ contemporary engraved after impressed ‘DR’ of rank. With original shortened ribbons and contained in contemporary filled case with the initials F.W.C. embossed. With copy service papers and other research.